This selection of limericks originated many years ago as the result of a challenge. I was attending a conference dedicated to the study of British author G.K. Chesterton at St. Michael’s College within the University of Toronto. It is particularly memorable because I chauffeured Sister Bernadette Sheridan of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Sisterhood to the event. She was a special woman, as nuns often are. I’m guessing she was in her late 80’s but she was bright and friendly and an excellent travel companion. Sister Bernadette loved word games and puzzles and she knew an extraordinary number of limericks, some of them quite ribald. She said she found them particularly useful during her teaching career because children love them and found them easy to read. One magical evening she regaled the assembled Chestertonians with her recitation of these limericks. Even though this is an often ribald category of humor, hers were pretty tame. But for kids they are rather risqué. Though she is long departed I remember her and many of her fellow nuns at the Motherhouse from the IHM Center in Monroe, Michigan very well. I was honored to be their friend.

There once was a boy from France
Who found some baked beans by chance
He ate them so quickly
That soon he felt sickly
And blew a great hole in his pants.


There once was a girl named Rose
Who had really peculiar toes
If she bent the right way
At any time of day
She could use them for scratching her nose.


There once was a storyteller named Zeke
Who was afraid he had reached his peak
But he was such a bore
That people would snore
As soon as he started to speak.


There once was a girl up a tree
Who was pleased by how far she could see
But a bird gave a peck
Then a squirrel bit her neck
And then she got stung by a bee.


There once was a girl named Cher
Who never ever cut her hair
When she was really old
It was full of black mold
But by then she didn’t care.


There once was a big fat beast
Who was slow and dumb at least
Some cavemen hooked him
And when they cooked him
They had a month long feast.


There once was a girl named Clare
Whose nose had more snot than was fair
She went in for a pick
But found it too thick
So her finger got stuck tight in there.


There once was a boy aged four
Who knocked his dad to the floor
I’m afraid it all started
When the young boy farted
And the smell was rotten to the core.


There once was a dog named Rott
Who howled at the moon a lot
But he was a big dunce
That he bit himself once
And needed a rabies shot.


There once was a caveman named Bradley
Who craved for soup quite badly
So he started a fire
Which you must admire
But he then burned his fingers quite sadly.


There once was a vampire named Lec
Who became an emotional wreck
So he started to bawl
“I have no friends at all
Because I’m a pain in the neck!”


There once was a gum-chewer named Deke
He blew a bubble the size of his cheek
When it popped it was sticky
All gooey and icky
And gum in his hair for a week.


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